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Page last updated at 13:26 GMT, Monday, 28 March 2011 14:26 UK

Injury cuts short Steven Caulker's stay at Bristol City

Steven Caulker
Caulker has made 30 appearances for City since arriving in September

Bristol City will be without on-loan defender Steven Caulker for the last eight matches of the campaign after he sustained a knee cartilage injury.

The 19-year-old had been set to meet up with the England Under-21 squad for Monday's match against Iceland.

However, he has now returned to Tottenham for treatment and surgery.

And his absence means City's defence will be stretched for the run-in with Louis Carey sidelined by a head injury and the loan window already closed.

Caulker, who was already set to have ankle surgery once the season finished, had been hopeful of claiming a spot in Stuart Pearce's Under-21 squad for the Uefa U21 Championship.

It's terrible news for the lad and I'd like to thank him for his contribution this season

Bristol City manager Keith Millen

He has started 30 matches during his season-long deal at Ashton Gate and has impressed at the heart of the City defence, helping to keep 10 clean sheets.

Praise has come from many quarters, including former England goalkeeper David James who described Caulker as one of the club's star performers this season.

"He's having a terrific season and without a doubt he's one of our best players," James wrote in his Observer newspaper column . "Caulks is quality."

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see also
Millen will ask Caulker question
22 Mar 11 |  Bristol City
Fractured skull sidelines Carey
28 Feb 11 |  Bristol City
Bristol City sign Spurs' Caulker
26 Sep 10 |  Bristol City
Team-mates: Steven Caulker & Danny Rose
25 Nov 10 |  Bristol City

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